REPORT BY IAIN MACKENZIE
PUBLISHED BY HELEN DIXON
PHOTOS BY KEVIN LEWINGTON AND IAIN MACKENZIE
Firstly, my story as an introduction to my first Woodley parkrun report.
On 15th April 2017 I watched my son Phillip complete his 100th parkrun. I had not realised the wide age range of participants, thinking myself at age 65 too old. I watched a few more and during May decided to do some training, I’d not clocked a timed run since running the Henlow 10, Cardington Airship Hangar to RAF Henlow 10-mile road race in 1976.
Training went well and I was pleased with my sub 40-minute time for my first Woodley parkrun on 2nd Sept 2017.
A mini milestone occurred for me on 2nd Sept 2018, one year on I had completed 25 parkruns, albeit only 14 at Woodley as ‘tourism’ took hold with runs at 9 other locations, as far away as Whitby near Toronto, Canada on 28th April and also Stuttgart in Germany on 23rd June. My most recent destination on 25th Aug was at Doncaster a remarkably similar course to Woodley, a small lake, 3 laps and even a fun fair!
By Dec 2017 I had decided to volunteer and am happy to say I’ve participated in all the outfield roles except Run Director (above my status at the moment), Number Checker and Photographer, completing 18 volunteer days including 5 Woodley junior parkruns.
It has been said before, it is possible to volunteer and run, or volunteer for more than one role in advance of the day, I have done 3 roles in one day and I know others have too. Without volunteers there would be no parkrun and it’s a great way of meeting people......give it a try, you’ll be most welcome!
So to the Woodley parkrun 314 – 8th Sept 2018. The forecast of light showers thankfully did not materialise and the day started cloudy, but during the course of the event the sun tried to shine through, although a slight breeze meant the 14c seemed a tad chilly, with volunteers commenting they should have worn a coat! Welcome to Autumn and the onset of the muddy parkrun!
Milestones today just the one. Congratulations to Birgit Woods on her 50th parkrun, 30 at Woodley but today she chose to run her 50th at Dinton Pastures in 29:30. We welcomed first timers and ‘tourists’ from Dereham, Norfolk and West London. Michael Southerton gave an excellent First Timers' Briefing supported by Amanda Hall showing First Timers the Finish Tokens.
For the first time in recent months we did not have the park to ourselves. Lawson’s Circus had arrived but thankfully they positioned so as not to affect our course. The footballers had returned to the top field and Sam Whalley Run Director reminded all present that parking for us is not permitted in Woodford Park car parks when football is taking place, as they pay for the hire of the pitches and car park facility.
So to the start....
296 runners were poised with finger to press their time piece on the shout of 3-2-1 parkun! It’s not only runners, but buggies and dogs on short lead are permitted. Today we had 3 buggies and unusually no dogs! The buggies were home in the time range of 21 minutes to 32 minutes. I do admire these chaps as it takes me all my time just to get round in 35 mins without a buggy!
Congratulations to Dean Horrell who was first over the line today in 18:37. Well done Dean! Naomi Harris was the first young lady over the line and 4th overall in 19:16 so close to her PB of 19:14. Naomi has been the first lady to finish 7 times during 2018. Very well done Naomi.
The stats revealed 43 PBs and 23 first timers today. 23 volunteers ensured this 314th Woodley parkrun ran smoothly.
Many thanks to Sam our Run Director today and all the volunteers, not forgetting all of the backroom volunteers who work tirelessly during the week to ensure we have enough volunteers on a Saturday. I know Sam is very keen that Woodley should have a run report every week, something many parkruns do not achieve, so if you fancy writing a run report please volunteer. (Don’t worry someone else will check it and publish it for you )
Now for the stats....
This week 296 people ran, jogged and walked the course, of whom 25 were first timers and 44 recorded new Personal Bests. Representatives of 19 different clubs took part.
The event was made possible by 24 volunteers:
Emma GRENSIDE • David Howard CASWELL • Mary JANSSEN • Kerri FRENCH • Michael Ian SOUTHERTON • Rhona Louise SOUTHERTON • Jenny OAKLEY • Helen M DIXON • Amanda HALL • Richard MASON • Samantha WHALLEY • Matt TYE • Timothy Moger CLARK • Kate PATTENDEN • Lesley QUINN • Stan PATTENDEN • Peter KEEN • Adam MAHONEY • Jessica DOLAN • Claire SOUTHERTON • Jo BARTON • Neil CARPENTER • Harsh DESAI • Iain MACKENZIE
Today's full results and a complete event history can be found on the Woodley parkrun Results Page.
The male record is held by Jonathan Stuart DAVIES who recorded a time of 15:20 on 26th July 2014 (event number 95).
The female record is held by Anna BONIFACE who recorded a time of 17:31 on 15th April 2017 (event number 241).
The Age Grade course record is held by Claire DONALD who recorded 91.08% (19:37) on 1st November 2014 (event number 109).
Woodley parkrun started on 13th October 2012. Since then 8,738 participants have completed 77,954 parkruns covering a total distance of 389,770 km, including 13,499 new Personal Bests.